Translated from the Russian by the author.London: John Long, Limited, 1937 Stock Code: 28191
First English edition, first impression, and Nabokov's first attempt at an extended piece of fiction in English. It had been preceded in 1935 by Camera Obscura, the first of Nabokov's works to be translated into English, which was also published by the hapless firm of John Long. Nabokov greatly disliked the translation and its poor quality "prompted Nabokov to undertake translating his next novel, Despair, by himself, a major step in his decision to become an English-language writer" (Boyd, Russian Years, p. 446). Few copies exist in jacket and copies as nice as this are very scarce.
Octavo. Original black cloth, titles to front board and spine gilt. Housed in a blue silk drop-down box with a blue morocco title label.
Endpapers somewhat browned, spine a little dull, slightly delicate at the top and with a touch of rub to the lettering. Very nice.
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